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U.S. Excludes North Korea From Nuke Talks In NYC

5 Nations to Discuss NK Nuke Issue in New York

Foreign ministers representing the five countries that took part in the nuclear talks with North Korea last month in Beijing, China will meet in New York Thursday to discuss follow-up measures to the six-way talks.

According to diplomatic sources on Wednesday, the United States invited ministers of South Korea, China, Japan and Russia for a five-way meeting in addition to the bilateral meetings held on the sideline of the 58th United Nations General Assembly.

North Korea, which sent Vice Foreign Minister Choe Su-hon for the UN meeting, was not invited on grounds that it does not have diplomatic ties with the U.S.

In Pyongyang's absence, the five other parties in the six-way talks are expected to discuss what they can do to realize the second six-way talks, on which they failed to extract a promise from the North Koreans during the Aug. 27-29 Beijing talks.

Negotiators at the time only said they reached a broad ``consensus'' to resume the talks in Beijing in October.

North Korea later said the talks proved fruitless and threatened to boycott future talks, but most think the impoverished country will be forced to agree to additional negotiations.

If the New York meeting takes place, the five nations are likely to renew their call for another round of six-way talks for as soon as possiblde.

While some think talks can be held as early as late October, other South Korean officials, including Foreign Minister Yoon Young-kwan, said this may be difficult due to an abundance of diplomatic dates scheduled towards the end of next month.

Yoon will be joined by Secretary of State Colin Powell of the U.S. and Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov of Russia for the five-way meeting, but it is not clear whether Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing will be at the meeting.

Japanese Foreign Minister Yorijo Kawaguchi will likely fly home early, meaning a senior ministry official such as Deputy Foreign Minister Hitoshi Tanaka may attend the New York meeting on her behalf.

© Scoop Media

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